Medical workers warn of diseases in winter

Not only dengue fever but also other dangerous diseases such as influenza, hand-foot-mouth, measles and rubella are likely to break out in the winter.

Health authority advises people to clear water containers where mosquitoes lay its eggs into to curb dengue fever (Photo: SGGP)

The development of these diseases is becoming more complicated because of unpredictable weather. According to experts, as usual, cases of dengue fever infections decrease in November and December yet at present, the disease still develops unpredictably with more severe cases and deaths.

Dr. Truong Dinh Bac, Deputy head of the Department of Preventive Medicine , said that since the beginning of the year, the country has recorded over 69,441 dengue fever cases and claimed 47 lives. 56 over 63 cities and provinces across the country have infections and dengue-related deaths.

Of cities and provinces having dengue fever cases, southern province such as Long An, Dong Nai, BinhDuong, Can Tho and Ho Chi Minh City have the infection rate of more than 75 percent and mortality proportion account for 90 percent of the country's total deaths.

In the North Vietnam, Hanoi is a hot spot of dengue fever with over 10,500 infection cases though there has been no deaths.  Worse, more people suffer sesrious dengue-related complications.

Vietnam has suffered harsh weather conditions this year as the consequences of the longest El Nino spell in history, according to the Department of Preventive Medicine; accordingly it is highly likely that the dengue fever will long last than previous years. Hence, the department warned people not to be neglected but determined to eliminate mosquitoes and its larva.

Additionally, people must go to nearby medical clinics for treatment when they experience fever and dengue symptoms.

Of these above-mentioned diseases, medical workers fret that hand-foot-mouth disease is on upward trend with more infection cases. Around 52,617 cases of hand-foot-mouth have been recorded in 62 cities and provinces in the country and most of patients are kids; as a result, it is highly risk that the disease will widely spread in schools.

Dr. Truong Dinh Bac said that hand-foot-mouth is a fatal infectious disease and the infection can be spread if contaminated droplets transferred from an infected person to healthy people; fecal matter (stool) is transferred from an infected person; and contacting with the fluids of an infected person’s blisters or saliva. The disease is easily transmitted amongst kids less than 5 years old. 

These following symptoms may occur during the course of the disease including fever, sore throat, headache, irritability, painful and red blisters in the mouth including the tongue and gums; and red rash on the hands and the soles of the feet..

Along with these infectious diseases, bird flu also occurred in some districts across the country. Worse, bird flu A/H7N9 is plaguing in China which highly enter Vietnam; especially in the year end when smuggling of poultry increased resulting in spread of bird flu viruses .

Moreover, Dr. Bac also warned that though just a few people have streptococcus, the bacteria caused more deaths. By statistics, during 11 months of the year, the country has 82 cases of people contracting streptococcus and ten of hem died of the bacteria. 

Over 70 percent of infected patients have contracted streptococcus suis because they had eaten undercooked pork from disease pigs. Hence, to prevent the disease, people should not eat undercooked pig blood pudding, pig organs as well as not sell or transport, slaughter the diseased animal.

By MINH KHANG - Translated by Uyen Phuong

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